Friday, October 14, 2005
When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something is possible, he is almost certainly right. When he states that something is impossible, he is very probably wrong. ~ ~~ Arthur C. Clarke (b.1917) - thus, a distinguished elderly British science fiction writer has spoken... Close enough to a egghead himself! And he admitted this...! Why won't the rest of them ever do likewise now, hmm? Stubbornness is present right next to erudition as well, you know...
Science will discourage old withered beliefs - not because these are the stuff of archaic and unverifiable superstitious material but truly because science has not "experienced it" - and will never accept something they cannot quantify. Seeing is believing, as they say - and the most stubborn scientist of all would sing a different tune if he had experienced himself a divine apparition - or seen an angel - or a ghost. Proving the existence of these via scientific methods would become secondary very quickly - for the scientist who starts seeing things is either hallucinating (as he would theorize it to be the case - at first) or really, truly seeing something! For scientists are materialists - they do not think their eyes can deceive them, see? They are "free" from superstitious beliefs, their minds are not "clouded" by myth - hence, if they see something, if they experience it, it is truly "there". They might still explain it completely wrong though, but at least it will be certified as having "been" - at long last! It is up to the believer to get them to accept what "it truly was"...
If there is only the ghost of a chance to convince them...
It is the easiest thing to confound a disbeliever, verily - by using their own arguments and methods against them! They are using them against themselves in the first place; blinding themselves to the truth by adhering too strongly to a rigorous, excessively rigid approach that cuts them away from wonderment - and enlightenment.
An open mind is good.
An open heart, as Christ instructed, is better!
Thursday, October 13, 2005
raiders of the lost cheese
Maybe -just maybe- Lake Champlain's Champ or Loch Ness's Nessie swam around these parts an decided to treat themselves? After all, according to the Boivin company, letting the cheese sit fifty meters underwater for a time was allegedly going to produce a truly unique-tasting cheese... Alas for Boivin, the lost fromage remains lost - a sunken treasure that has simply vanished! Master divers are baffled and can only confirm the mystery - the cheese is no longer where it was left! It couldn't have swum away... currents are not strong enough to have carried away 900 kg of it just like that... so, what happened to it? Truly, if not Champ and Nessie having dinner together - maybe the fishes took to it?!? Hmm... everyone has heard of catfish, but mousefish... that eats cheese? Hmm...
The thing is, that cheese might just as well remain unfindable - as the CFIA noted (that is the CFIA - not the CIA! The Canadian Food Inspection Agency...) Boivin was breaking food safety laws. His precious cheese cargo, had it been retrieved, was not to be sold through retail outlets anyway for it had not followed the proper scrutiny during its aging process - thorough analysis is required at various stages of said process (hence the appellation ''processed cheese''...? *lol*). Who would have carried out these analyses - mermaids? Cheese smells as it is - however, this novel but illegal aging process forced the CFIA to raise a real stink over it all right... and with good reason! The water is not so cold after all (two degrees Celsius during the salvaging attempst in July) - couldn't that cheese be spoiled already? On top of the questionable aging process, of course... On top of all that, it was submerged in forty meters of polluted waters, surely (nowadays, all bodies of water are...) - logically, couldn't the cheese have become somehow contaminated in there...? And, still, Boivin kept sending divers down during low tide... In his defense, he did have chemical tests planned for the cheese, once it would have been retrieved - just to see how it actually did react to such a long stay underwater... Boivin was even willing to be the guinea pig of service and taste the cheese!
Fact is - Boivin would have been safer there than with ANOTHER product from his dearest company... Seems like some of his company's spreadable processed cheddar cheese could have caused nothing less than botulism (a life-threatening meanie of an illness that is simply unforgiveable; caused by bacteria). Government food inspectors simply issued a recall on that product, immediately dubbed as ''the potentially dodgy cheese'' by the media! The dodgy cheese in question was said to be cunning as well - it would not smell nor look spoiled at all and was, for its part, sold in 400-gram packages bearing the UPC number 6 21879 00750 3... If you have one of those in your fridge, toss it outside asap! Watch your garbage though, so no one comes and eats it! Not the neighborhood skunk... nor the neighbor's cat or man's best friend, the dog... nor Nessie & Champ! *lol*
In light of all this, the annoying (and *nombrilistique* attitude...) Québec cheese makers have is downright - perplexing, judging from the health questions their products raise and all...! That silly commercial they used to air all the time here - about a cheese branded *Le P'tit Québec* and the catch phrase at the end was always the same... ''Y'est juste pour nous autres!'' which means ''this cheese is just for us", true-blue (as in cold) Quebeckers! ''Québécois Pure Laine'' - HA! If this is the quality of it, you can keep it and eat it too - no one else is crazy enough to want to try!
Wednesday, October 12, 2005
sauve qui peut - c'est yom kippur
Further more, it is said that it is a day set aside to "afflict the soul" - aye, so many of us, of all walks of life, creeds and faiths apparently like to torture ourselves! Let's keep it going now - self-defeating 101! *lol*
Question... if at sundown it is atonement time - does that mean that at sunrise it was a gunfight at the OK Corral type of thing that happened? That would explain why the atonement for the sins is so needed and all... *lol*
Tuesday, October 11, 2005
on conjugal bliss... today, of all days...
Couple is a c word (not an L word; not a G or Q word either...) - other "c words" include committment, compromise, connection, communication... hmm, and craziness! In other words, it is a juggling act.
Today is National Coming Out Day in the US - for some reason - oddly enough coinciding with... Columbus Day (?). Beyond seeing some wacko revisionist historian trying to "out" the queer (in the original sense of the word) so-called discoverer of the Americas (even though tons of people had discovered it before him) - I personally see no connection between the two "holidays" (term very loosely applied here). I will take the opportunity though to reaffirm myself -not so much come out- as a heterosexual holy man wannabe!
Despite the fact that so-called reverends have been known to preach - and take a spouse... I have not, sometimes to my dismay... other times I simply wonder why. The Billy Grahams and Benny Hinns of this world must be freer than I am I guess...
Personally, I cannot want anyone it seems - everytime I come close to spending my life with a woman who -somehow- fancies me... something happens that ruins it. I have seen this pattern develop all throughout my adult years... and, quite frankly, I see the Hand of God in this - He Wants me to be dedicated only to Him... I really think I should have been a man of the cloth of some kind - and I disappointed God in not becoming so. If I disappointed GOD HIMSELF... it is no wonder I disappointed so many ladies too over the years. Not quite sure how it happened though; especially the last time it did, since I was totally and fully willing to commit and in fact, for all intents and purposes, was already. I can only hope that no one cried too much over me.
Please - anyone who wants to pat me on the shoulder and say "now, now - don't be sad" - do so via e-mail; and respect my decision to keep TLB as impersonal (and as non-diary-like) as it can be. Verily, this post is as close as I will ever get to turn this outlet for my "wordsmithing" into a "diary"... Heaven preserve me from THAT...
Monday, October 10, 2005
Thanksgiving - in Canada only
Carry on complaining everywhere else...?
Before today's post turns into a sing-along-blog (for I want to share with you TLB regulars a gem of a Thanksgiving hymn from waaaaay back...) I guess I will -as I well should- participate in the tradition - and effectively give thanks to the Lord for all that He Does for me and for my dear ones.
I am thankful for a whole lot of things indeed (even if I don't show it always) - on many fronts and on many levels.
I am thankful that loved ones, family and friends are alive and well - I am hopeful that the dear ones who have departed are in fact better off; their journey ended, they must know bliss and eternal peace now - I believe it to be the case.
I am thankful for the food and assorted goods we all have - indubitably!
I am thankful for the ability to still laugh a good laugh - that always helps!
I am thankful for other things too... odd things... for instance, I am thankful for having druggies in my neighborhood; they are so fearful of the police, they keep quiet and are not the least bit troublesome to my people!
I am thankful the Red Sox are out of the race for another title - that will result in less nerve-racking nights hoping they manage to grasp another improbable extra-innings win because they placed themselves in such a dire "no margin for error" predicament again... As I get older, I really do not care for that sort of thing anymore! Same goes for NBA action - and it goes triple for NHL "sudden death overtime" (I always resented that appellation...).
I am thankful for all the jerks that walk the Earth today - and there seems to be more and more; verily, they are coming out of the woodwork now! For, with them all over the place like that, the genuinely kind-hearted ones, the good folks, the gems are all the more valuable and precious. :)
I am thankful for evil even - for without, logically, what would we bash?!? (These are the basics of any tale worth telling, of course - there has to be conflict; good versus evil is preferred over shades of grey versus shades of grey... but I digress!).
I am even thankful for all the trials and misfortunes that I have gone through in life - for these have forged the person that I have become today. As the story goes, we are like diamonds, precious stones that have to be cut into shape by the Grand Jeweler in order to truly be all that we can be. (And, as 007 fans and Flair fans know, diamonds are forever - so are our souls! It all comes together so well when we make *luminous connections* - does it not?). Another story has the devil being so envious -as he always is- of God's Creation (particularily of the blooming flowers and their resplendence) and that was when he concocted, in the darkness underground, precious stones that would cater to man's avarice and cause their perdition. These are all, of course, but stories... Still, the adversary is always capable of everything - never forget that, folks! And he does lurk...
I could go on indefinitely here - so many things to be thankful for out there, even when you do NOT throw in odd choices as I did in there... *lol*
To be able to see, hear, love, breathe, eat, drink, walk, talk, speak freely, vote, do the right thing, contribute to the greater good... have I forgotten something in there? Oh - yeah - to be able to READ... read me please! *lol*
But it is time, I think, to cut to the chase - and sing along to the hymn!
Straight from the year of our Lord 1844... here is The Thanksgiving Hymn: "Come, Ye Thankful People, Come" (come along now, will ya?) *lol*
"Come, ye thankful people, come, raise the song of harvest home;
All is safely gathered in, ere the winter storms begin.
God our Maker doth provide for our wants to be supplied;
Come to God's own temple, come, raise the song of harvest home.
"All the world is God's own field, fruit unto His praise to yield;
Wheat and tares together sown unto joy or sorrow grown.
First the blade and then the ear, then the full corn shall appear;
Lord of harvest, grant that we wholesome grain and pure may be.
"For the Lord our God shall come, and shall take His harvest home;
From His field shall in that day all offenses purge away,
Giving angels charge at last in the fire the tares to cast;
But the fruitful ears to store in His garner evermore.
"Even so, Lord, quickly come, bring Thy final harvest home;
Gather Thou Thy people in, free from sorrow, free from sin,
There, forever purified, in Thy garner to abide;
Come, with all Thine angels come, raise the glorious harvest home."
The words for the Thanksgiving hymn, "Come, Ye Thankful People, Come," were written by Dr. Henry Alford, a noted hymnologist and Greek scholar, and published in 1844, the same year of the publication of the first of his four volume work, "The Greek New Testament: With a Critically Revised Text; a Digest of Various Readings; Marginal References to Verbal and Idiomatic Usage; Prolegomena; and a Critical and Exegetical Commentary, For the use of theological students and ministers." Alford, the son of the Rector of Aston Sandford, was the picture of a 19th century Anglican churchman-- educated at Trinity College, Cambridge, took Holy Orders in 1833, vicar of Wymeswold, Leicestershire for 18 years, and Dean of Canterbury in 1857. The St. George's, Windsor tune for "Come, Ye Thankful People, Come" was originally composed by Sir George J. Elvey (1816-1893) in Thorne's "A Selection of Psalm and Hymn Tunes" (1858) for the hymn, "Hark, the Song of Jubilee." Elvey's tune was subsequently set to Alford's words in "Hymns Ancient and Modern" (1861). Elvey was the organist of St. George's Chapel, Windsor from 1835 to 1882. What diversity, that the Separatist Pilgrims and their later counterparts from the Church of England should combine on both sides of the Atlantic to give to us a Christian appreciation of the celebration of Thanksgiving! "4 Who art thou that judgest another man's servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up: for God is able to make him stand. 5 One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind. 6 He that regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the LORD; and he that regardeth not the day, to the LORD he doth not regard it. He that eateth, eateth to the LORD, for he giveth God thanks; and he that eateth not, to the LORD he eateth not, and giveth God thanks. 7 For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself. 8 For whether we live, we live unto the LORD; and whether we die, we die unto the LORD: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the LORD's" (Romans 14:4-8).
Aye - let us party as if it was 1844...
Fitting that we would all be reminded today that "we die unto the LORD" - for today is the World Day Against the Death Penalty, according to Amnesty International. My advice is to do like Christmas - and strive to make that action last too, every day of the year. Details here